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UPDATED: Suspicious-looking device found outside Ferndale school, area evacuated

Vista Middle School in Ferndale (March 7, 2022). Photo: Whatcom News

FERNDALE, Wash. — Ferndale School District officials sent a message to parents and families of students today, Monday, March 7th, about 11:35am that they had evacuated an area of the Vista Middle School campus after discovering what was described as a “suspicious device.”

The following message, sent about an hour later, clarified the situation.

The reported device has been assessed by a bomb assessment team and was identified as a non-threatening device made to look harmful. Law enforcement officials are conducting a comprehensive search throughout the campus and students and staff will return to normal operations upon approval.

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Ferndale School District (March 7, 2022)

Officials with the Ferndale School District collaborated with the Ferndale Police Department (FPD) and issued the following statement about 2:45pm.

This morning, March 7, the administration at Vista Middle School reported a suspicious device to the Ferndale Police Department. Students and staff were removed to a safe distance as recommended by law [enforcement] officials.

Law enforcement, including the Hazardous Device Unit from the Bellingham Police Department, assessed the device, disassembled it, and found it to be non-threatening. Additionally, a comprehensive search of the building and surrounding perimeter was conducted, and students & staff returned to normal operations.Ferndale School District (March 7, 2022)

The incident continues to be investigated by the FPD according to Spokesperson Riley Sweeney.

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